In a chat with PUNCH , singer Alfred Inetimi Odiom stage name Timaya talked about his childhood, running away from home and his music.
See excerpts below:
Lessons learned while hawking:
I learnt that to succeed in life, I had to stay passionate about my dreams, never settle for less and keep working hard every day. Most importantly, I learnt to believe that God makes everything possible in good time. I have been through a lot of things in life, and if I begin to share my story, you will be shocked. I was born into a fairly comfortable family but I was a rebel and I often ran away from home. I once lived in Port Harcourt with a woman who was older than me and she used me like I was a sex toy. I had to service her whenever she had the urge in exchange for food and a roof over my head. However, I have always dreamed big. Despite my travails, I never let go of my aspirations while believing that one day, I would make it big.
His role model:
That would be Bishop David Oyedepo. I attend Living Faith Church, akaWinners’ Chapel, and I don’t joke with the activities of the church. As much as I can, I make sure I attend as many of their services, crusades, and other programmes whenever I’m in the country.
On whether he still has artistes on his DM Records:
I currently don’t have any acts signed on and I am currently not looking to sign any new acts right now. I may change my mind later.
His work with youths from Niger Delta:
I am not a Niger Delta activist; I am a Nigerian, who wishes nothing but the very best for the country and our people. There’s a lot that I do, but I like to keep that part of my life very private.
On people’s perception that he no longer sings socially conscious songs:
This is funny, but that’s not the case. As an artiste, I am inspired by life, not just by one thing. I make music about the society, partying, love, beautiful women and my life in general.
Addressing vulgarity in his songs:
I do those types of songs because that’s what people really want. Some people criticise those songs, but they have millions of views and downloads online within a short period. We really should stop deceiving ourselves. Like I said earlier, I sing about a variety of things. Music is a money-making business, so I always consider what people want to hear and give them priority. That’s what fetches me money.
On people’s perception of him being arrogant:
That’s not who Timaya is really. I’m really a nice guy; you just need to get to know me and you would realise that the picture painted of me is not accurate at all.
On whether he has any other business:
Music is all I do right now and it has been taking care of my needs, so I’m okay.
His biggest song:
I would say Bum Bum and Sanko.
I would describe my style in two words: easy -going and classic.
Interview to be cont’d HERE